´Dry´ skin in atopic dermatitis. I. A clinical study
A common finding in patients with atopic dermatitis is the occurrence of ´dry´ skin on non-eczematous regions. ´Dry´ skin is here defined as a clinical condition meaning a rough, finely scaling non-inflamed skin surface. The frequency and extension of ´dry´ skin were examined in 50 patients with atopic dermatitis and were compared with those in 50 non-atopics. A discrepancy was found in both groups between the subjective opinion of the presence of ´dry´ skin and the objectively noted ´dry´ skin. Among the atopics, 48% were found to have ´dry´ skin compared with 14% among the controls (p less than 0.01). The most frequent location of ´dry´ skin in both groups was the back. Intolerance to wool was found to be significantly high (p less than 0.01) in the atopic group, although it was also quite common in non-atopics. In order to correlate the clinical observation to skin morphology, a replica-technique was used to visualize the surface of ´dry´ skin in the scanning electron microscope.